Blonde Ambition: Kelly Collins Ascends as Best New Euro Performer

Blonde Ambition: Kelly Collins Ascends as Best New Euro Performer

Since time immemorial, the Urals have traditionally been seen as the border between Europe and Asia. Amidst those ancient, almost mythical mountains, the city of Perm proudly announces itself as “the most Eastern city in Europe.” It’s a borderline full of mystery and majesty, embodying the defining continental dichotomy of Russia’s soul.

It is also the hometown of blonde stunner Kelly Collins, recently named 2023 XBIZ Europas Best New Performer. She describes Perm as “pretty far from Moscow, but not too much.”

There is both reserve and determination in Collins’ demeanor — Grace Kelly as a Bond temptress, if you will. She happens to have the perfect, very specific physical presence European glamcore studios seek in a performer: fit, blonde, impeccable in expensive lingerie, a little icy, a challenge befitting the often-tuxedoed, professionally manscaped lotharios who are the male avatars in those productions.

Collins’ upbringing has served her well. Her family was well off, and she says that as a child and teenager, she had everything she wanted. Unlike many other Russians, Collins experienced foreign travel regularly while growing up.

“We were abroad at least once a year,” she says, “so I actually saw many countries before I started to travel on my own. I’m very grateful for my parents, who worked really hard for it, and they support me even now,” she says. “They were always telling me that I have to grow up and leave the country, so I think it’s funny how I actually did it!”

Collins’ story has a beginning typical of many show business careers, adult and mainstream both: she felt bored in her peripheral hometown. She attended college, but became depressed and couldn’t see where she was heading.

“That led me to quit in my third year,” she explains, quickly adding that she “didn’t regret it even for a moment.”

The Path to Stardom

Like many sex workers of her generation, Collins made her first foray into adult entertainment during the COVID-19 pandemic, when she started camming from a local studio. Suddenly, she had found her calling.

“I was obsessed with my first adult work webcamming,” she says. “I tried it after an accidental meeting with a girl who was already doing it, and became pretty popular on the site very fast.”

Her new job allowed Collins to embrace her whole personality, and she is grateful to the people with whom she worked, as well as those who got to know her from the other side of the screen. Still, as any cam performer will tell you, burnout is real.

“I was too much online and literally told the whole story of my life 10 times per day,” Collins recalls.

While stepping up her career as a much-in-demand LiveJasmin model and becoming more comfortable camming from her home, Collins also began producing her own adult videos with her then partner. Initially she shot only faceless videos, uploading them to Pornhub because, at the time, she didn’t know much about OnlyFans.

“I don’t really remember the very first video I uploaded on the site but I remember that even then I wasn’t satisfied by its quality,” notes perfectionist Collins. “It was without my face and didn’t get many views. So I was concerned that I would not be successful at it, and didn’t pay much attention to posting regularly.”

Still, the ice had been broken.

“I think I’ve always been a little rebel — trying to break the system, playing with morals and changing the concept of normality,” Collins confesses. “So it was natural for me to arrive at the idea of being in porn.”

In 2021, as pandemic travel restrictions were easing, Collins decided that she wanted to tackle a career in professional porn. She booked her first production in March 2022 — starting right at the top.

“I already knew about Julia Grandi through some interviews that I found on YouTube,” she says. “I was sure that I wanted to work with her, so I sent my resume to her agency and wrote to the HR manager that I wanted to reach her.”

After waiting for about a month, Collins received a direct reply from Grandi. The news could not have been better: Grandi was offering a contract with Vixen Media Group, effective immediately.

“That felt like a dream come true,” Collins reveals.

Self-Discipline and Glamour

The glamorous nature of Vixen’s shoots, painstakingly masterminded in all aspects by Grandi herself and her hand-selected team, appealed enormously to Collins.

“After seeing myself on camera with my ex on Pornhub, I didn’t really like the results,” she explains. “I wanted to see myself shot professionally. Before I started in adult, I had different thoughts about it. I guess I was judging people who did that, but my opinion changed radically when I first communicated with those actually involved in the industry.”

What never really changed was her decision to give it a go and work with enormous self-discipline until she became a success. It was “stardom or bust” for Collins, from day one.

Her first-ever professional studio scene was on a demanding Vixen shoot, alongside Alecia Fox and Alberto Blanco. She says the experience, guided by her new mentor and agent Grandi, “went super easy” although she readily admits she was “kind of lost” during the shoot.

“I was lucky to have Alecia around to help me and show me how to do better, how to open up to the camera angle and lots of other little tips,” Collins says. “She was really nice to me. As it was my first experience in porn, I was nervous. But fortunately, I got a great connection with both my partners and was really inspired by the people from Julia’s team. Everyone was so professional and supportive that I felt completely comfortable and actually had fun adapting to my new life choice.”

Then it was off to the porn races: a few days after her debut, Collins shot her first Tushy and Blacked scenes as well.

“I have a lot of warm — and hilarious — memories about those shoots,” she smiles.

Collins is grateful that Grandi was a fundamental part of her life during her first year in the business.

“She was always there to help me, and has been like a part of my family — although we have our issues sometimes!” she admits. “It’s nothing strange: we both have complex natures with strong beliefs and can be very stubborn. Nevertheless, I love to work with her. I knew about her and Vixen since before entering the industry, so the truth is that my goal since the beginning was to work with them. I just didn’t expect it to go so well!”

“Well” is an understatement. From among her entire crowded roster of Euro beauties, Grandi tapped Collins to be the centerpiece of VMG’s “In Vogue,” released across three of the company’s prestigious sites. In the five-part superproduction, Collins plays an aspiring model who arrives in Paris and encounters both the cutthroat world of fashion and a mysterious wealthy protector.

Her vertiginous ascent within the industry unleashed something in Collins: she came into her own.

“Porn changed my life completely,” she admits. “Before all this, I was an anxious and apathetic person who didn’t like where she was and didn’t know what she wanted. Since I came to adult, I never felt better. No matter how many challenges I still go through after leaving my country, I don’t want to go back and I don’t feel like I made a mistake living abroad. After my first-ever scene, I remember how I came back to the hotel, lay down on the bed and for the first time ever had the feeling that I found a place where I belonged. That feeling still hasn’t changed, and maybe that’s why I’m doing so well.”

Of the many scenes Collins has now shot, it is hard for her to name a favorite.

“I have many about which I have warm memories, so I really can’t choose one,” she reflects. “In fact, almost every time I do a new scene now, it feels like it’s my new favorite! I love them because I remember the feelings that I had while I was shooting these scenes, and that’s what makes them special for me.”

A Victory Lap

The relentless excitement of XBIZ Amsterdam, her first adult show, was overwhelming for the self-described “total introvert,” but Collins still managed to manifest her more social side and make a triumphant appearance at the epic Red Light Party hosted by Vixen and JulModels during the show.

“I was having the most fun with my friends!” she says. “I’m curious about next year’s event already, as I expect even more from it.”

When her name was called out and she found herself climbing to the podium to be crowned Best New Performer at this year’s XBIZ Europa Awards, Collins admits, it was a big surprise for her. Her account of the evening is quintessentially Russian, perfectly showcasing that culture’s signature blend of joy and despair.

“I tend to have low expectations in order to not feel disappointed, so I was ready to hear that one of my friends won this award,” she says. “I was very nervous and completely lost before and during the ceremony, but was lucky to have my friends around me the whole time, to cheer me up.

“When they called my name, I didn’t even understand it until my friends told me to go up on the stage. That was exciting, to be on the stage, and very pleasant to hold the award for sure! But right after the ceremony was over, I went back to feeling very tired, and even though I was extremely happy, I couldn’t show it off a lot. It actually took me a couple of days to get this feeling of pleasure.”

She pauses. “So, I made a gift to myself and decided to stay in Amsterdam for some more days after XBIZ.”

In the wake of the accolade — the maximum recognition possible for an overachieving relative beginner like her — Collins is looking forward to completing her exclusive Vixen contract and working for other European studios, before trying her luck at the international market and in the U.S.

“Now that I’ve won the XBIZ Europas award, I start to understand that I did achieve something,” she concludes. “I proved to myself that it’s possible for someone like me to be here, and that gives me even more motivation to move forward.”


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